Wessex Cyclo-Cross League annual prize presentation evening

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Winners, friends and family all came together on Saturday evening to celebrate another successful cyclo-cross season in the Wessex area.

Chairman Geoff Shergold welcomed everyone to the evening’s events and proceeded to outline the state of business and to announce the winners as they came up to collect their trophies and certificates. The league has increased in size by 11% over last season with a total of 1450 riders across all categories now riding within the Wessex League.

The evening concluded with a buffet and a quiz set by Geoff which was one by the team from PedalOn with the help of local club Sotonia.

Michael Cotty riding for Wheelbase Cannondale retained his senior league championship, while Claire Smith from Swindon RC retained her women’s championship. The winner of the combined vets/women’s/junior league was Matt Hargroves from Hargroves Cycles, while Sean Williams from Wight Mountain was the vet champion. The team prize in this category was the team from Hargroves Cycle’s with riders Matt Hargroves, Matt Woods and Malcolm Cross collecting medals.

The youth league was won by Harvey Lowe from Hargroves Cycles, with Bethany Taylor from BCDS the overall girl’s champion. Tom Sewell (Swindon RC) and Emily Wadsworth (Beeline Cycles) were the U14 league winners.

The Wessex League has a very strong under 12’s league with large numbers at every race throughout the area. The overall winner this season was Harry Dridge from Southdown Velo with Bethany Lewis (PPV) the girls champion. The under 10’s champions were Ryan Hodgkins (Poole Wheelers) and Anna Wadsworth from Beeline Cycles.

The team from PedalOn took the senior team prize and the team consisting of Nick Onslow, Jamie Norfolk and Chris Minter were all on hand to collect the medals.

There are two special trophies awarded on the evening and both were awarded for consistency throughout the season. The first award was the Steve Coates Trophy which was award to the rider who compete and finishes all the races in the season. This season eight riders fitted these criteria and so a tie-breaker was need. The committee looked at other events these riders had ridden in this season and it was soon clear there was one clear winner - David Hobbs from Corinium CC who was competing in the Wessex League for the first time.

The second trophy awarded was a new one this season and was awarded in memory of Wessex chairman, national trophy, national championship and Wessex league promoter, cyclo-cross coach and  enthusiastic supporter Paul Coates who sadly lost his long struggle with illness in 2010.This new trophy which was commissioned for the league will be awarded annually who has made the most significant improvement in their racing results, which was one of Paul’s main aims. The first recipient of this Trophy is Matthew Hargroves, from Hargroves Cycles - he is a first year junior and swept all before him in the Wessex veteran/junior/women’s league winning every race he rode and then becoming South of England champion.